860 Syllabus

Department of Instructional Technologies Helping people in education, business, and communities learn ITEC 860.01 Distance Education (3 units) Fall 2005 Monday – 4:10-6:55 PM, Burk Hall 170 (may also meet in BH 168 as needed) Instructor: Dr. Brian Beatty Office: BH 163C (inside the ITEC department office) Office Hours: Monday 1-4 PM Phone: 338-6833 (alternate – 338-1509) E-mail: bjbeatty@sfsu.edu Course URL: http://ilearn.sfsu.edu

I. Course Description

From the course catalog: “Understanding of distance education development and delivery. Exploration of the field through demonstrations of telecommunications facilities, meetings of professional organizations, internet capabilities, and teleconferencing classrooms. Development of an instructional unit delivered via distance education.” Prerequisite: ITEC 800 and 801 should be completed before enrolling in ITEC 860. Permission to enroll in this course may be requested from the instructor if a student is able to demonstrate knowledge of ITEC 800 and 801 content through parallel coursework or life experience. Introduction to Distance Education: This course introduces the learner to the principles learning at a distance, commonly called distance education, distance learning, distributed learning, e-learning, online learning, etc. In this seminar, we will explore the complexities of designing instruction in various distance contexts (such as, corporate training, education, etc.). We will learn the fundamental instructional concepts supporting various distance learning strategies, tactics, and media, and apply these concepts in a real context through frequent online discussions and a major design project. There are two major elements in this seminar:

  1. An introduction to various distance teaching and learning methods, such as video telecommunication, classic correspondence models (print), online education, and independent e-learning modules. We will explore the instructional design considerations, technical implementation requirements, and implications for learning (and teaching) with each of these methods. Your learning of this content will be assessed primarily through a short paper assignments, hands-on activities, and class discussions throughout the semester.
  2. Practice applying instructional design skills for distance learning by planning and moderating a topical online discussion and completing a comprehensive distance learning instructional unit design project. This project will be selected by you – working in conjunction with a small group of your peers. Your small group will choose a distance education topic and develop online activities and discussion for one week of the seminar. Additionally, your team (this may be a different team) will complete a brief design plan and produce a limited (short, but complete) instructional unit as the major assignment for the second half of the course. (Specific assignments detailed below.)

Readings assigned for each week will provide the foundation for our discussion and class activities. Readings from the text(s) encompass the majority of these assignments. Supplemental readings will provide alternative and complementary views on distance learning (and there are many!). Finally, there will be several discussion topics that we will choose and develop together as a class, based largely on your (collective) interests.

II. Accommodation Statement

If you are a student with a disability requiring special accommodation in this course, you must be registered with the Office of Disabled Student Services (DSS). Your counselor will give you a letter that you must deliver to the instructor in person, at which time an appointment will be arranged to discuss appropriate accommodation. This must be accomplished during the first three weeks of class.

III. Learning Goals

  1. Demonstrate a sound understanding of distance learning theory and practice by critiquing instructional units (commercial/educational and peer work).
  2. Analyze an instructional context and determine an effective mix of distance learning strategies and tactics.
  3. Create a plan for implementing a distance learning instructional unit in a specific setting.
  4. Create an instructional unit (short – about fifteen minutes) and conduct a basic formative evaluation.

IV. Readings

Required Texts: Distance Education: A Systems View (2nd Ed, 2005) by Michael G. Moore and Greg Kearsley; published by Thomson Learning/Wadsworth. ISBN/ISSN: 0-534-50688-7 Facilitating Online Learning: Effective Strategies for Moderators (2000) by George Collison, Bonnie Elbaum, Sarah Haavind, and Robert Tinker; published by Atwood. These texts will be used as the primary print resources for our learning about distance education. We will read most of the material in the texts during the first two-thirds of the course. During your project work (primarily during the second half of the course), you will refer back to the texts for reference and further learning support. Additional Readings: Each week I will provide access to other important readings. Hopefully, these will all be available electronically so you may print your own copy, if you wish. Readings for each week will be announced during the previous week’s class and/or online at the course website (http://ilearn.sfsu.edu). If you find interesting, relevant readings on your own in trade journals, magazines, newsletters, etc., please bring them to class to share or post them to the course website.

V. Course Requirements and Grading

Basic Course Requirements: Class Participation (10%) This is a seminar course, implying active engagement in discussions and other class activities. Participation includes completing pre-class readings, online exercises, and joining in class discussions – both in class and online. Reflection Posts (10%) Weekly you will post your thoughts about the class and the distance education field in an ongoing discussion thread – similar to a “blog”. These posts are intended to help you consider questions important to you, and capture your thoughts at selected instances in time. Posts will be viewable by others, though there is no requirement for others to read your posts or vice versa. You will receive full credit for this assignment if you contribute a meaningful post once a week for 14 weeks of the semester. Specific instructions available in class the first week. Written Assignments (40%) Approximately four short writing assignments are due during the course of the semester. We will utilize the course website to post, update, and comment upon these short papers. Paper 1. Distance Learning Review/Critique (due week 3) This 3-4 page paper will be assigned and completed during the second quarter of the course. You will find, attend, and evaluate a distance learning event (seminar, course, module, etc.) and prepare a short written evaluation to turn in. You will also present a brief (5-10 minute) summary of your experience to the class. More details will be provided in class at the appropriate time. Paper 2. “White paper” on a current DE topic (due week 6) – This paper is a 3-5 page report on any current, relevant topic in the field of distance education. You should choose and research a unique topic and prepare a summary/position paper describing the topic and its importance and/or relevance to you and the field of distance education. You may choose a topic related to your online discussion moderation assignment (see below), but you may not choose the exact same topic as any other student. More details will be provided in class at the appropriate time. Paper 3. Front-end Analysis for DE (due week 10) – This 3-5 page paper will describe the front-end instructional design analysis that would be effective for a specific DE learning situation (you will choose). You will include information about and/or results from a Needs/Learner/Context/Task Analysis. Hopefully, this paper will help you start thinking about a context for your design project. As such, you should consider this paper as a tool to get you moving on your major work of the semester. More details will be provided in class at the appropriate time. Paper 4. Annotated Glossary/Bibliography (due week 12) – This paper has two major components: a five term glossary and a 10 item bibliography. For the glossary component: Choose any five terms used in the DE field, and create a short glossary entry for each. The entry should include the term, a definition (and description) of how it is used in our field, and a link to a web-based or print resource that either describes this in more detail or provides an example of the term in practice. For the bibliography component: List any 10 resources you have found to support your learning about distance education. In your list, include a short description of the resource (what is it, what is it for) and your evaluation of its usefulness. Why was it valuable to you? For each resource, give its full reference so that someone else can find it if they want to. This assignment will also contribute to a perpetual resource we are creating for the ITEC community at large. More details will be provided in class at the appropriate time. Online Discussion Moderation (20%) During one week of the semester, you will work with up to 3 peers to prepare and moderate instructional activities and an online discussion focused on a distance education topic of your choosing. During the first several weeks of class we will develop a list of topics and assign specific weeks to teams of students. During your week you will be required to present a brief introduction to the topic, provide resources for students to explore on their own, and then create a threaded online discussion (or possibly schedule a synchronous chat(s) session) to coordinate student interaction on this topic. The following week, your group will present a short debrief to the class focused on the “highs and lows” of your experience. (What went well, what did not work, what would you change the next time, etc.) Finally, you will turn in a 1-2 page summary to the instructor. Possible topics:

  • Copyright
  • Plagiarism
  • Technology challenges – Bandwidth, etc.
  • Mixing online and face-to-face methods (blended or hybrid)
  • Professional organizations and conferences
  • Specific uses in XXX industry/company/etc.
  • Certification
  • Quality Control
  • Distance Education in developing countries

Distance Learning Design Project (20%) A short but comprehensive distance learning design project will be completed during the second half of the course. This project will be completed in teams of up to 4 students and will require you to apply the principles of effective instructional design to create the design plan and part of the content for an original instructional unit delivered by distance learning technologies. At the final class meeting, your team will present your instructional unit during a 20 minute presentation to your peers. More details will be provided in class at the appropriate time. Late Assignments In order to receive full credit for an assignment, it must be turned in at the requested time. Partial credit for late assignments may be given, at the discretion of the instructor. Late assignments will receive a minimum 10% grade reduction, and will not be accepted after one week has passed since the original due date. Grading: A- to A 90-100 % B- to B+ 80-89 % C to C+ 75-79 % No Credit below 75% Incomplete: If you do not complete the course requirements by the end of the semester, you may receive a grade of “I” (Incomplete) with prior arrangement with the instructor. 75% of all course assignments must be successfully completed prior to the end of the semester in order to qualify for consideration of an Incomplete. All Incomplete grades will have a pre-arranged deadline for completion, usually no longer than the end of the following university term (spring, summer or fall). Changes to the Syllabus: This syllabus is subject to change throughout the semester due to emergent student needs, important new learning opportunities, or other unforeseen situations. In the event a change must be made, the instructor will notify the students as soon as practically possible, and provide an updated syllabus on the course website. Other Student Resources Associated Students Inc., Cesar Chavez Student Center M-103, (415)
338-1230 ext. 4. (phone), (415) 338-0522 (fax), http://www.asisfsu.org.
Chasiti Effort, College of Education Representative.

Cahill Learning Resource and Media Lab, Burk Hall 319, (415) 338-3423, http://clrml.sfsu.edu. Chasiti Effort, Graduate Student Assistant.
VI. Course Calendar (tentative)

# Date Topics Readings and Assignments
1 Aug 29 Course Introduction What is Distance Education? Historical Distance Education Today’s DE Landscape Text: Moore – Ch 1-3
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
2 Sep 12 *** No Meeting Sep 5 *** DE Technologies Online learning environments (OLEs) and Virtual Classrooms Text: Moore – Ch 4, Collison – Ch 1 and 2
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
3 Sep 19 ***online class*** Topic: When is Distance Education the best choice? Instructors, students, context, and content. ***online class*** Text: None Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Distance Learning Review/Critique, Reflection
4 Sep 26 Front End Analysis for DE Text: Moore – Ch 6 and 7, Collison – Ch 3
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
5 Oct 3 ***online class*** Student topics TBD ***online class*** Text: None
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
6 Oct 10 Social Interaction in the Online Classroom Text: Moore – Ch 5, Collison – Ch 4
Assignment Due: White Paper on Current Topic, Reflection
7 Oct 24 *** No Meeting Oct 17 *** ***online class*** Student topics TBD ***online class*** Text: None
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
8 Oct 31 E-Learning Development: Issues and Practices Text: Collison – Ch 5 and 6
Assignment Due: Reflection
9 Nov 7 ***online class*** Student topics TBD ***online class*** Text: None
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
10 Nov 14 Evaluation in DE: Programs, Courses, and Learners Text: Moore – Ch 10-12 Collison – Ch 7
Optional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Front-end Analysis Paper, Reflection
11 Nov 21 ***online class*** Student topics TBD ***online class*** Text: None
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
12 Nov 28 Theoretical Foundations for DE Case Studies in DE Text: Moore – Ch 9 Collison – Ch 8
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Bibliography/Glossary, Reflection
13 Dec 5 ***online class*** Student topics TBD ***online class*** Text: None
Additional Readings: TBD Assignment Due: Reflection
14 Dec 12 Project Presentations and Course “Wrap” Assignment Due: Final Design Papers, Reflection

VII. Other resources: A. Large websites with rich resource sets: 1. Distance Education Clearinghouse – University of Wisconsin Extension
The Distance Education Clearinghouse is a comprehensive and widely recognized Web site bringing together distance education information from Wisconsin, national, and international sources. New information and resources are being added to the Distance Education Clearinghouse on a continual basis.

The Clearinghouse is managed and maintained by the University of Wisconsin-Extension, in cooperation with its partners and other University of Wisconsin institutions.

http://www.uwex.edu/disted/home.html 2. American Center for the Study of Distance Education – Penn State University
American Center for the Study of Distance Education

Penn State’s American Center for the Study of Distance Education (ACSDE) was founded in 1986 to study and disseminate information about distance education in all its forms. As the first center of its kind in the United States, ACSDE has helped to shape distance education practice through its publications, research symposia, leadership institutes, and moderated listserv.

http://www.ed.psu.edu/acsde/ B. Plagiarism and other topics
Help with understanding what is and what isn’t acceptable use!


Office of Instructional Consulting at Indiana University: An archive of “brownbag” talks on topics important to instructional design and distance education.

http://www.indiana.edu/~icy/ebrownbag/ C. APA Style for Citations and References
A few helpful sites:

Purdue University Online Writing Lab (start here):

APA Electronic References:

Help is here – from your local SFSU CET!
http://cet.sfsu.edu/etl/content/citations/ Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration http://www.westga.edu/%7Edistance/jmain11.html D. Learner Centered Principles
Background and the descriptions of the principles at http://www.apa.org/ed/lcp.html

Putting the Learner at the Center: Next-generation innovation emphasizes enabling learning in classrooms and e-learning environments. http://www.educause.edu/nlii/annual_review/2003/putlearneratcenter.asp

E. Social Interaction Online
Easy read: Brent Muirhead – Interactivity Research Studies

More difficult: A Constructivist Method for the Analysis of Networked Cognitive Communication and the Assessment of Collaborative Learning and Knowledge-Building

http://www.sloan-c.org/publications/jaln/v8n2/pdf/v8n2_meyer.pdf The hardest of all: Dr. Beatty’s dissertation on this topic J http://online.sfsu.edu/~bjbeatty/dissert/dissert_index.htm And the resulting “interactive” website: Social Interaction Online (SIO) – http://itec.sfsu.edu/social/pages/index.cfm F. Front End Analysis / Instructional Design for DL
For an academic paper looking at the sociological side of virtual classrooms, read David Jaffee’s manuscript at: http://www.unf.edu/~djaffee/virtualtran.htm (Here’s the formal citation – “Virtual Transformation: Web-Based Technology and Pedagogical Change”. Teaching Sociology 31 (2), April 2003.)

Try these for some other views:

Concurrent Instructional Design: How to Produce Online Courses Using a Lean Team Approach – U of Syracuse: http://it.coe.uga.edu/itforum/paper56/paper56.htm

From “Designing Web-based Training” by William Horton, comes this interactive site to explore various instructional strategies he discusses in his book (includes working samples): http://www.designingwbt.com/index.htm

Learner Analysis anyone? This article describes a process to help higher ed students self-assess whether or not they are ready for a DE course. Be sure to view (and take) the learner self-assessment questionnaire linked from the article. Would you ask the same questions if you were creating this short survey?
http://www.campus-technology.com/news_article.asp?id=10123&typeid=156 G. Evaluation in DE – Phillips Five Levels (ROI) and more …

Phillips discusses an additional level of evaluation – Return on Investment … his fifth level to add to Kirkpatrick’s four levels.

Phillips, J. J. (1996). Measuring the Results of Training. In R. L. Craig (Ed.) The ASTD Training and Development Handbook: A Guide to Human Resource Development. SF: McGraw Hill.

The Consortium’s E-learning Model – http://www.concord.org/courses/cc_e-learning_model.html

The Training Foundation – position paper and standards for e-learning – http://www.trainingfoundation.com/articles/default.asp?PageID=997 and http://www.trainingfoundation.com/standards/default.asp?PageID=395

Institute for Higher Education report on Quality Online – http://www.ihep.org/Pubs/PDF/Quality.pdf

WorldBank Distance Education evaluation white paper:

CA Virtual Campus 2003-2004 Report –

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